Crouch hits out at Liverpool boss

Benitez sold Keane to Spurs, just six months after signing him for £20million from the same club.

Crouch found himself in a similar situation when Benitez forced him to leave Liverpool last summer.

He said: “There are a few similarities between what has happened with Robbie and my own situation. I feel sorry for him.

“We all know what a great player Robbie is but he didn’t get a fair crack of the whip at Liverpool.

“But that is the way Rafa operates and it can be very frustrating because, when I was there, he never really explained why I was not playing.

“There were times when I thought he didn’t fancy me but then he’d start me for two or three games on the spin.

“It got to the stage where I gave up second guessing which games I would be playing and which ones I wouldn’t.

“The biggest letdown for me was the Champions League final against AC Milan, when Rafa went with one up front and played Dirk Kuyt, as I was desperate to show what I could do on the big stage.

“The Liverpool fans won’t care about what Rafa is like as long as they keep winning and you cannot argue with his record but, at the same time, it can be very frustrating.

“When I left to rejoin Portsmouth Rafa told me he rated me and wished me all the best so I do not feel I have a point to prove.

“But, at the same time, there is always an extra incentive when you are playing against your former club so I would love to score.”